Common Sense is the song of life and it associates with life in all settings with a different rallied round melody. A complete song has many melodic phrases so do the Common Sense. It is the synthesis of many sentiments; different melodic phases – Reason, Moderation, Penetration, Consistency and Wisdom. These are the components of Common Sense.
Before start composing, you need not to have full song composed in your mind. You may start with just a single melodic phrase that will automatically give you directives for remaining others. In Common Sense, this first melodic phrase is Reasoning. It is the focal point of Common Sense. Reasoning is the process of responding towards stimulus from external and internal factors, looking for reasons of beliefs, conclusions, actions and feelings.
A group of frogs were traveling. Suddenly two of them jumped into a deep pot of milk.
Both the frogs encountered the stimuli of falling down into a very quiet deep pot.
They started reasoning for various instant choice pop-ups like (1) they could be trying to jump out for as long as possible (2) They may keep on swimming until some miracle happens to save their lives. (3) They may give up; fell down and die.
They had no wisdom regarding such situation. They were flabbergasted and chose the first option. Both the frogs started jumping up out of the pot with all their strength as this was the most reasoned and favorable option to them at that point of time.
Reasoning, the mandatory inherent module of Common Sense, is the solitary source of fixing the relativeness of things. Reasoning depicts the degree of consciousness. It arguments for the reason to do or believe something for a certain situation.
The process of reasoning encompasses dissection of subject or matter, examining it thoroughly through different point of views.
The most important thing tied with reasoning is that it should be done before adopting, referring or rejecting the subject or matter.
It is the indispensable ingredient of Common Sense and is also indispensable for concoction of healthy thoughts. It is the sensible reasoning which determines the choicest; the wisest to take up.
The conspicuousness of reasoning power lies in the free choice to make free decisions by rationalizing thoughts and action in the light of the sense of right and wrong.
The first frog was vigorously enthusiastic to jump out and save his life. But continuous failures turned him irritated and disappointed. He thought he was wrong, there is no way out; he gave up, fell down and died.
“Enthusiasm is as brittle as crystal but Common Sense is as durable as brass.”
- Yoritomo Tashi
Enthusiasm brings power and nothing great has ever been achieved without enthusiasm but on the other side enthusiasm is extremely taxing without reason and sound understanding.
Moderation is about striking the balance between over and under doing of it, not like the first frog over enthuse or giving up; but a balance. When we see the things through over enthusiasm, we refuse to recognize that we could be deprived of that mental or competitive edge and find ourselves deceptively allured.
When we are under-enthusiastic, we do not wish to admit positive chances of success and in both the dispositions, we lack the moderation. The premise is false in both the situations.
Moderation is eliminating extremes. It is used to ensure normality. Practice of moderation prohibits us when moving towards escape from opportunities due to dull attitude or rushing towards charming but illogical and unreasoned selection.
Moderation is hard. It takes patience, it takes commitment and it comes with plenty of failure along the way. The real test is whether you choose to persevere. Virtues and wisdom of old ages, learnings from our experiences as well as others help us to keep ourselves aligned with it.
The other frog continued to jump as hard as he could, but he also failed even after his best efforts. But he didn’t lose hope. He kept on swimming to stop drowning.
Observation of continuous failures has blessed him with a new insight to keep on swimming in the milk with a consistent speed and in an uniform direction so that the butter churn out and he may jump out by striking his foot against this semi solid support. This is called Penetration to the situation.
Penetration is observation through careful & directed attention. Spirit of penetration is exercised by foreseeing the solution with careful rationalization and applying logic in the light of prevalent factors, then matching the results with the forecast. It gives us the understanding of hiatuses and lacunas hindering the one-off solution.
Another way to sharpen the penetration is to research; explain the hidden reasons which have produced them. Spirit of penetration gives birth to evolved Common Sense.
Penetration has the power to turn insignificant things into cardinal ones. All the inventions and discoveries are the results of penetration. We all have certain degree of penetration but it could be fortified by intent and training. If you want to acquire this spirit more, first start working with subjects in which you have no personal interest. Gradually you will learn it and it will be easy for you to judge even those situations and things dispassionately and impersonally in which you find your personal reservations.
It took two hours to churn out the butter but frog kept on doing it consistently with a hope to have success. And he succeeded.
Consistency is the condition of retaining form; adherence to the same principle, course, form etc. Consistency lacks contradiction. It is difficult to conquer but it conquers difficult.
“In baseball, my theory is to strive for consistency, not to worry about the numbers. If you dwell on statistics you get shortsighted, if you aim for consistency, the numbers will be there at the end.”
- Tom Seaver
From the repetition of events, from their correlation, from their equivalence, from their parallelism, knowledge is derived.
Consistency keeps us on track leading to the unique purpose by eliminating waywardness, misleading and misplacement. It should be applied to the process of learning, unlearning, relearning and changing the course. From the repetition of events, from their correlation, from their equivalence, from their parallelism, knowledge is derived and this knowledge works as pool of tools to make distinct decisions. The knowledge itself is called Wisdom. Thus the wisdom acquired by the surviving frog is, perhaps, - “Not to jump into any where (or in a situation) without knowing what and how is inside.”
Wisdom is an ideal that is celebrated by mankind as the application of knowledge to live a good life. It assists reasoning in the course of differentiation between various options available and in choosing the one which is best. It is the experience of others, well tested and proved with the passage of time.
Fig. 7 Reason Aids Wisdom, Wisdom Aids Reason
So the five components of Common Sense- reason, moderation, penetration, consistency and wisdom are the obligations to be developed in us to conjure the Common Sense.